Meet NYU Stern’s MBA Class Of 2021

Median base salaries for NYU Stern MBA grads jumped 12% in 2019. NYU Stern photo


The Class of 2021 hasn’t just been busy remaking themselves. Felipe Jaramillo, for example, helped transform Acciones & Valores, a 60-year-old trading company into a wealth and treasury management powerhouse by re-designing its product lines. At McKinsey, Riya Dhanania become the firm’s go-to expert on Microsoft’s Power BI – and the team she left now handles all work related to this analytics tool. At the same time, Nicholas Turner, a Columbia and Oxford grad, developed many of his last company’s biggest partnerships. Better still, he taught dozens of members of the U.S. Department of Justice how to use the auto-populate feature in Microsoft, saving untold hours (and tax dollars).

“If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help someone else,” Turner writes.

That latter portion seems to be the tacit mantra of Sternies in general, a group that traditionally revels in inclusivity and supportiveness. “When I was applying to MBA programs, I was told that “Sternies” are the kind of people who ‘open the circle.’ Literally,” writes Emily Glaser. “Be it social or professional, Sternies include you in the conversation, and they don’t puff their chests out or monopolize conversations to make themselves stand out. But I didn’t believe it until I experienced it myself at a recent leadership conference. My Stern peers actively tried to include me in conversations with company reps and encouraged me to speak up. There was no competition and we shined both as individuals and as a group representing Stern.”


As a group, the Class of 2021 profile also shines. Namely, the class’ average GMAT jumped from 717 to 721 in the 2018-2019 application cycle. This average equals Yale SOM incoming class while topping Michigan Ross and INSEAD. By the same token, median GPAs also climbed a tenth of a point to 3.54.

That said, NYU Stern still fell into the same lull as its peer schools, with applications declining by 5.4% to the Class of 2021. What’s more, class size dipped from 375 to 350 students against the previous year. With fewer applications, acceptance rates naturally rose, three points in this case to 26%. On a positive side, the percentage of women in the class continues to improve, reaching 37% for the incoming class. Still, the percentage of international students plunged from 39% to 33%, though the class still boasts students from 37 countries. Overall, a quarter of the class is American minorities, with 9% being traditionally underrepresented groups.

Sternies spending time together after class

Like previous years, undergraduate Business majors represent the largest segment of the class. However, this year’s 30% segment is a discernible difference from the 36% who majored in business two years ago. STEM-related majors continue to boost their presence at Stern, up two points to 22% this year. The same could be said for Social Science, which has gone from 16% to 20% over the past year. Majors from Economics (15%) and Humanities (15%) round out the rest of the class.

The class is also quite diverse in terms of their professional experience. Just two categories – Financial Services (29%) and Consulting (12%) – broke double digits. The next largest group, Technology, came in at 8%. Consumer Products and Non-Profits tied for a 7% share of the class, followed by the Military (6%) and Entertainment and Media (5%). The remainder of the class is splintered into smaller groups that include Real Estate, Law, Advertising, Healthcare, Manufacturing, and Law.


The class has plenty to look forward to in the coming years. In October, for example, Stern released its Class of 2019 Employment Report. Median base, for example rose 12% to $140,000, with sign-on bonuses remaining at $30,000 average. More impressive, 9 of every 10 graduates had landed jobs or offers by graduation. The biggest trend, according to Stern data, is the growth of consulting, which attracted 37.1% of 2019 grads – an 11% increase over the past two years. What’s more, finance has continued its slow side, losing a 4.4% share of graduates in the past year alone.

One reason? NYU Stern offers a truly well-rounded education to MBA students. In a 2018 U.S. News survey of business school deans and MBA directors, Stern ranked in the Top 3 programs for Finance and International Business and among the Top 10 for Marketing, Accounting, and Information Systems. Notably, the school maintains a great mix of academics and practitioners among their faculty according to a 2018 Bloomberg Businessweek survey of students. That faculty includes 438 professors across all of the undergraduate, graduate, and executive programs. Not surprisingly, NYU Stern ranks among the most prolific producers of research to top academic journals. Bottom line: Stern MBAs can tap into a wide range of expertise across the school. In fact, many adjunct professors, such as former Buzzfeed President Greg Coleman and former Sotheby’s CEO Tad Smith, bring practical know-how that’s unrivaled in peer schools.

All-in-all, the Stern MBA offers over two dozen specializations, 200 electives, 50 clubs, and a dozen student-run conferences. What’s more, Stern features over 5,400 students, with full-time MBAs populating just 13% of the school. In other words, MBAs can take advantage of a wealth of resources in Kaufman that complement the limitless access to industries, companies, opportunities, and thought leaders across New York City.

Make no mistake: Stern isn’t content to rest on its laurels. This winter, it became the highest-ranked American program to enter the online Master of Management space, with a curriculum that covers everything from strategy to fintech to analytics…not to mention two residential immersions in Greenwich Village. The school has also launched a one-year tech MBA, one that has already achieved gender parity. In addition, the program is regaled for its Fashion and Luxury MBA, with students recently taking an excursion to Italy and partnering with companies like Carolina Herrera and LVMH.


What else can potential applicants expect from the Stern MBA program in the coming years? Recently, P&Q reached out to J. P. Eggers, Vice Dean for MBA Programs on some of the upcoming additions and unique wrinkles to the Stern experience. Here are his insights…

P&Q: What are the most exciting new developments in your program?

Eggers: “Applicants who want to pursue an MBA full time at NYU Stern now have more flexibility and choice of program path and can select one of three options based on their career goals: the two-year Full-time MBA, including a summer internship; the focused one-year Andre Koo Technology & Entrepreneurship MBA; or the focused one-year Fashion & Luxury MBA. Regardless of program path, all full-time MBA students now attend Stern’s LAUNCH programming together at MBA Orientation in August, gaining access to industry leaders and a chance to meet classmates from across programs in their early days at Stern.

Students in the NYU Stern Andre Koo Technology and Entrepreneurship MBA were exposed to a range of companies, from agile startups to tech giants, on both the East and West coasts through Stern Solutions projects, company visits and skill-building workshops, as part of the built-in experiential curriculum. NYU Stern photo

Also new at LAUNCH this year, we are excited to be running our first-ever leadership focused simulation. This experience not only provides a high involvement activity to help students bond early in their time at Stern, but also serves to set the tone for what students can expect in their leadership education here. We believe that students don’t develop as leaders simply through listening to speakers, discussing cases, or learning theory. High involvement simulated experiences aim to accelerate students’ leadership development by giving them the opportunity to confront difficult situations and then skillfully debrief the experience. We’ve been working hard to infuse this approach into our leadership offerings throughout the School to prepare students not only for their first job post-MBA, but for every role after that as well.

Additionally, we introduced a new healthcare specialization that will go into effect in Fall 2019. This specialization has been crafted by working with the NYU School of Medicine and the NYU Wagner School of Public Service and also includes connections with NYC’s med-tech scene through the Endless Frontier Labs program at Stern for early-stage science-and technology-based startups. MBA students can choose to specialize in up to three areas out of a menu of 26 options.

J.P. Eggers. Stern photo

Starting in the 2019-2020 MBA admissions cycle, applicants considering one of Stern’s three Full-time MBA programs will have an additional standardized test option available: GMAC’s Executive Assessment, which has been used successfully by leading part-time and executive MBA programs around the world, including Stern’s Langone Part-time MBA program and EMBA program, as a valid predictor of graduate academic readiness. Stern applicants can choose to submit either the GMAT, GRE or Executive Assessment as part of their application.”

P&Q: What is the most underrated part of your program that you wish prospective students knew more about?  

Eggers: “Each of our MBA programs is deeply connected to industry, with our NYC location being an unmatched asset. We want the student experience to be all about transformation and, as a school, we walk the talk.”

We support this transformation in several ways, but one, in particular, is through experiential learning, what we call Stern Solutions. Each year, Stern MBAs have the opportunity to solve real-world business problems by starting, advising or investing in real businesses. Stern Solutions projects bring together teams of students and faculty in academic courses to solve real business challenges. A unique aspect of Stern’s focus on experiential learning is the integration of faculty-led, academic material with project-based experiences. This helps connect the project experience to the broader MBA curriculum.

Last year alone more than 600 students participated with over 100 corporate partners including multinational brands, startups, and non-profits in one of more than 30 Stern Solutions curricular offerings in a variety of industries. Looking toward the future, experiential learning at Stern continues to grow with a more than 160 percent increase in student participation over the last four years.

In addition, with the establishment of our new focused MBAs in technology, and fashion and luxury, Stern Solutions is a built-in, compulsory part of the entire curriculum.”

* Go to Page 3 for students profiles from the Stern MBA Class of 2021.

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